Sunday, May 20, 2018

Celebrate Monarchs! A Free Butterfly Stencil to Use on a Garden Rock

I live in a congenial town, today as I was spreading fresh hardwood bark around my Dappled Willow area garden I waved at neighbors biking by. "I love your garden Suzanne!" the woman called out. "And I love the Butterfly painted on your rock in your garden!" Well that compliment made my heart sing. "I can give you the stencil if you want, and it's also on my blog" I called out, "I love your blog!" she replied as she and her husband and dog sailed down the street. But then I realized, it wasn't on my blog, my pineapple stencil is on this blog, not the butterfly one, both were found online as free to use, but both needed cleaning up.. See Pineapple Stencil story here:
My Free Pineapple Stencil and Story Behind it

I created the Butterfly stencil last year when I and my neighbor BettyJo decided to plant two butterfly habitats in our downtown riverwalk, a conserved area with trails that run along the Farmington River. I was interested in raising monarchs, Betty Jo upped the ante by coming up with an idea to approach the Chamber of Commerce and town about public habitats. The monarch population like bees, has been diminishing at dangerous rates in America due to pesticide use. Without these winged insects our food supply is negatively impacted. To date many non-profits have flourished to assist in replenishing our landscape with Monarchs. So we jumped on the bandwagon and received immediate approval to plant two habitats designed by local realtor, WMP board member and landscape designer Kate Lange, all with the help of local sponsors. I designed the logo and we are officially:

I planted a variety of perennials in my side garden to attract Monarchs, last year Purple Cone Flower, Butterfly weed and Butterfly Bush, Stonecrop Sedum, Shasta Daisy. But my stenciled butterfly rock is a visual to let passerby's know, this garden is Monarch friendly. Last year we learned to raise butterflies, and released them in our town habitats. Over 100 Monarchs were raised from collecting  eggs from Milkweed plants that edged our town pond. How such a beautiful insect can grow from a very teeny white egg within a few weeks is flat out, amazing.

If you'd like to let others know your garden is butterfly friendly, you can download the below stencil with instructions to use, have fun! And if you want to know more about The Windsor Monarch Project please check out our facebook page:

Download the Butterfly Stencil here, click on image, then print:

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